We support the health of mother and child

A midwife for you

Antenatal care is free of charge. Expectant mothers can either go to their health care centre or choose another centre and register themselves there. 

Consultations and exams are offered from the start of pregnancy through to childbirth. The first consultation with a midwife usually takes place over the phone soon after pregnancy is confirmed. Then the first examination is scheduled and information provided that is good to have at the beginning of pregnancy.

The number of antenatal exams depends on the circumstances. Usually women receive 7-10 exams. It is possible to have a phone consultation with a midwife between exams. 

Antenatal care is in the hands of midwives in collaboration with GPs at health care centres and obstetricians if necessary. 

Information about the arrangement of antenatal care at your health care centre can be found on your centre’s homepage and on the services page of Heilsuvera.is

Solid foundation

The goal of antenatal care at the health care centres is:

  • to support the health of mother and child
  • to provide professional care, support and guidance
  • to detect risk factors and respond to them
  • to provide knowledge about pregnancy and birth


We offer these classes in Icelandic.

Exams in antenatal care

Once pregnancy is confirmed, it is good to contact the health care centre and request a phone call with a midwife. During the call the midwife provides information that is good to receive at the beginning of pregnancy and most often schedules an appointment for the first examination. It is recommended that the first visit is before 12 weeks of pregnancy. 

In the first consultation, the midwife records general health information as well as previous pregnancy and birth history, if applicable. You can expect the first antenatal care appointment to last up to one hour.

It is estimated that a woman pregnant with her first child will have 10 examinations and a woman who has given birth before will have 7 examinations. The number of examinations during pregnancy can vary, however, depending on the woman’s needs and the midwife’s assessment at any given time. Each antenatal care appointment usually lasts 20-30 minutes.

At each visit, the midwife discusses your general health and well-being. Blood pressure is measured and urine protein is checked. The fetal heart rate is monitored from the 16-week examination onward, and the size of the uterus from the pubic bone to the end of the uterus is measured from the 25-week examination onward. At week 36, the baby’s position in the womb is assessed.

 Education and counselling is provided as appropriate at any given time according to the needs of the expectant mother/parents.

Antenatal care provides opportunities to discuss and ask questions about topics such as well-being, diet, exercise, screenings during pregnancy, fetal tests, services available during pregnancy, choice of birthing location, childbirth, birth control, maternity leave, breastfeeding, post-birth care and more. 

There are a number of antenatal care screenings. The purpose of these screenings is to check specific issues that might affect the health of mother and baby during pregnancy. Issues screened for include Rhesus disease, anemia, hepatitis B and C, HIV, rubella and syphilis.

Ultrasounds and other foetal examinations are offered in collaboration with the Department of Foetal Diagnosis at the National Hospital.


Where should I turn if pain or problems arise during pregnancy?

It is normal for parents to have questions during pregnancy and it is possible to get answers to them in many places.


At heilsuvera.is, nurses are available from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day, both via online chat and by phone at 513-1700. At  heilsuvera it is also possible to talk to a midwife from 10 to 12 every weekday.

This website contains information in Icelandic about pregnancy, the changes that occur during pregnancy, well-being and complications of pregnancy. There, you can find answers to various inquiries and concerns about the pregnancy.

Your health care centre

At each health care centre, there are midwives, GPs and nurses who provide telephone advice every working day from 8:00 to 16:00. It is also possible to send a question to midwives and doctors at the health care centre through My Pages on Heilsuvera.is. 

Emergency service of the Maternity Ward 543-1000

You can contact the emergency services of the Maternity Ward 24 hours a day if you are bleeding from the vagina, if you suspect amniotic fluid leakage or beginning labor.

From the 28th week of pregnancy, contact can be made due to reduced fetal movements. 

112 Emergency number

Always contact the emergency number directly in the event of an emergency, accident or heavy bleeding.



The National Hospital has one maternity ward which takes care of all women giving birth from 22 weeks of gestation onward. Emphasis is placed on promoting normal births. The maternity ward also cares for women who need specialised care during childbirth.

The National Hospital’s website, www.landspitali.is, contains videos that introduce childbirth services and show the hospital’s labour ward and postnatal ward.

A midwife in the antenatal care department can provide information on choosing a birthing location, and women who are considering a home birth can get more information from their antenatal care midwife.


Well-child care

When the midwives’ home care service ends or when the family returns home after a longer stay in the post-natal ward, the well-child care team takes over. Well-child care begins with a home visit.

Well-child care service is divided into districts and parents go to the health care centre that serves their district. It’s a good idea to let the well-child care department at your health care centre know when the family returns home after childbirth.  

Read more about the health care centres’ well-child care

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